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5 things to know about dog flu

Published: Thursday, April 16, 2015 @ 7:07 PM
Updated: Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 11:30 AM
By: Cox Media Group National Content Desk

For over a decade, outbreaks of the dog flu have been reported across the country. Each year, dog owners report cases of the illness in their canines.

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Barkpost breaks down the dog flu outbreak by responding to the most common questions pet owners have.

What is dog flu?

Dog flu, also known as canine influenza, causes primarily respiratory issues. Most dogs contract a mild form of the virus and only require supportive care to recover.

Is it contagious?

Yes, just like with human influenza, dog flu can be spread by close contact.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms, which may take up to 10 days to appear, include coughing, sneezing, fever, nasal discharge, lethargy and loss of appetite.

Can dog flu be prevented?

To reduce your dog’s risk of getting dog flu, consider the dog flu vaccine. It does not eliminate the risk of your dog getting canine influenza entirely, but like with the human flu vaccine, can reduce illness length and severity. Make sure to keep your dog away from other dogs who appear ill and do the same if your dog shows any signs of illness. If there is an outbreak of dog flu in your community, steer clear of public areas like dog parks.

Can other pets or humans catch the dog flu?

Cats and potentially other animals can become infected with the newer strain H3N2. Humans cannot catch dog flu.